U.S. denies airstrikes that killed dozens of Syrian troops

The United States military has denied responsibility for a series of airstrikes in Syria Monday that killed dozens of government forces.

The United States on Monday denied conducting airstrikes that targeted Syrian military positions in Deir Ezzor, which Syrian media reported killed dozens of troops. File photo by Youssef Badawi/EPA-EFE
The United States on Monday denied conducting airstrikes that targeted Syrian military positions in Deir Ezzor, which Syrian media reported killed dozens of troops. File photo by Youssef Badawi/EPA-EFE

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said at least 40 government fighters loyal to President Bashar al-Assad died in the attack overnight.

The death toll is expected to rise, the British-based watch group said.

Syrian state news agency SANA said the U.S.-led coalition launched the airstrikes that targeted military positions in the Deir Ezzor area.

SANA called the coalition strikes a “desperate attempt” to raise the morale of rebels groups and terror organizations.

If the U.S.-led coalition was responsible, the attack would mark the second major bombing of Syrian Army troops in the past year.

Pentagon spokesman Maj. Adrian Rankine-Galloway told Russia’s TASS news agency the United States did not conduct the airstrikes.

“We haven’t carried out a strike in Abu Kamal,” Rankine-Galloway said.

U.S. Central Command spokesman Maj. Josh Jacques also said U.S. and coalition forces were not involved.

By Sara Shayanian